461505 Upgrading Waste for Food, Fuel and Chemicals Production Via Metabolic Engineering

Tuesday, November 15, 2016: 8:30 AM
Plaza A (Hilton San Francisco Union Square)
Gregory Stephanopoulos, Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

Waste is rapidly becoming a major problem of the modern world. Disposing of waste in an environmentally acceptable manner presents major issues and in many cases it incurs major costs to communities all over the world. On the other hand, waste, in its various forms, (gases, liquids or solids) could be a valuable feedstock if it could be converted to biofuels and other products. This is possible for some types of waste that is available in aggregated form and at low or negative cost. Various waste-processing technologies have been developed in recent years including industrial biotechnology. In this task, the latter is aided by critical advancements in Metabolic Engineering that transforms microbes into little chemical factories capable of converting feedstocks to a variety of products. In this talk, I will present a technological platform based on native or engineered microbes that convert waste gases and municipal wastes to lipids for biofuel production, specialty products, food and bioingredients. The platform is centered around volatile fatty acids that can be generated from waste streams by various biological and thermochemical methods.

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See more of this Session: Honorary Session for Georges Belfort III
See more of this Group/Topical: Separations Division